Time travel flick – Men In Black III

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One of the funniest movies of the 1990s, the first Men In Black was a frightening, intriguing variation on vampire-chasing, ghost-busting comedies, starring Tommy Lee Jones as Agent K, a senior operative of a top-secret government agency that monitors the activities of extraterrestrial aliens.

“At any one time there are 1,500 aliens on Earth,” he tells his new sidekick, Agent J (Will Smith), adding, “Most of them are here in Manhattan.” Seeing it was about as refreshing and surprising as attending the opening of the first ever McDonald’s. The disappointing 2002 sequel,Men In Black II, was a painful affair, about as much fun as eating your 500th Big Mac.

Now after a 10-year gap, Jones and Smith reprise their double act of taciturn, imperturbable K and fast-talking, streetwise J in the 3D Men In Black III. Etan Cohen (an Israeli-born screenwriter) has turned in a screenplay that takes the franchise in another direction, that of the time-travel flick.

The moderately enjoyable movie begins as a parody of the Hannibal Lecter series with the vicious alien Boris the Animal (Jemaine Clement) sprung from his top-security jail on the moon to pursue his nemesis, Agent K, on Earth.

A time machine takes both back to 1969, whence Agent J follows them, and ultimately the trail leads to Cape Canaveral and the Apollo II, moon shot that year. Along the way there is some amusing fun of a conventional sort involving an encounter with Andy Warhol (I’ll leave you to guess whether he’s an alien or another Man in Black).

The 3D enhances two spectacular sequences in high places – one at the top of the Chrysler Building, the other above the capsule of the Apollo 11. They’ll have acrophobes shielding their eyes the way they did when Tom Cruise scaled the Burj Khalifa in Dubai for Mission Impossible- Ghost Protocol.